Day two was one I was nervous about for weeks. This was the Welcoming Ceremony. We were not here last year for this formal ceremony. In Japan, this ranks as high as a graduation ceremony. Some of the women wear their kimonos, and everyone is dressed in formal attire. There are many speeches by officials and students both. I was slated to give a six minute speech in both Japanese and English!
This is a picture of me (Stan Trevena, on the left) and Scott Kuykendall (Director of ROP, on the right) just before heading in for the ceremony. This was a very big deal. The night before I was asked last minute to rewrite my speech (after having worked on it with my Japanese teacher for several weeks). I was very nervous.
After the ceremony all of the students posed on the steps of the Café before changing into street clothes for our day in Kyoto.
Our first destination was Ryoanji. This is a beautiful temple with a famous rock garden. The temple grounds include a large lake and many gardens.
And we were blessed again with being in Kyoto during the peak of the cherry blossoms.
Next Stop was the Golden Pavilion. Again, this was a large temple area with many gardens, stunning views, schools of Koi in the water, and to the students delight a lot of souvenir shops.
After the temple we took a bus to the Nishijin Textile Center, or better known as the Kimono Factory.
Every hour through the day a fashion show draws large crowds. We got them in time to see the last show of the day.
There were lots of things to look at an buy on the second floor of the building. Not may left without leaving some of their yen here.
And while we waiting for our bus to go back to the school we saw evidence that it’s not just Americans who endanger themselves by texting while driving. Here a girl whizzes through the bus stop on a bike while texting! Maybe not as bad as texting while driving, but still pretty crazy.